Today, I have author Julie Ann Walker here with us sharing 10 things she learned while writing her Black Knights, Inc. series.
Welcome to The Book Vixen Julie!
Top 10 Things I Learned While Writing This Series:
I feel a little like David Letterman here with the top ten list. The only thing I'm missing is a gap-toothed smile, a snazzy jazz band with a drummer that'll give me a bah-dah-bum when I'm particularly witty, and a cheeky audience. Oh, wait... This is the Book Vixen, so the cheeky audience is covered. Yahoo!
Okay, without further ado - I just love that word, don't you? Ado. Sounds sexy and... French - the top ten things I learned while writing this series.
10.) I have a deviant mind. In the second book, IN RIDES TROUBLE, I introduced a lollipop into a sex scene. Since the heroine in that book is always chowing down on Dum Dum suckers, I thought a little sex and candy was appropriate, right? Wrong. My editor blushed while reading the scene and promptly took out her shiny, red pen...
9.) There is such a thing as too much coffee. During a particularly grueling deadline, I think I must've consumed two pots of java in about four hours. My eyeballs were literally bouncing around in my head and what followed was a migraine to drop an elephant.
8.) My husband is a fount of inspiration. No elaboration needed here. (Nudge, nudge. Wink, wink)
7.) Military men LOVE to talk guns. No! Not that type of gun. Get your heads out of the gutter! Sheesh! Anyway, I volunteer at the USO and whenever I had a question about weaponry or equipment, all I had to do was pull one of the servicemen aside. Usually by the time he was finished extolling the virtue of this pistol or that machine gun, my ears were bleeding and my brains were sliding out through my nose.
6.) Sitting at my desk and typing is not the same as running around doing errands. Just ask the too-tight jeans in my closet that haven't seen any action in over a year. Treadmill desk anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
5.) Not everyone wants to hear about the minutia of my writing career. My husband is a gem. No doubt about it. But I've learned when his eyes glaze over at dinner and he reaches for his third glass of wine that it's time to zip it and talk about... oh, I don't know... his day maybe?
4.) Authors who write, work full-time jobs, and still manage to raise their kids are the equivalent of superwoman. I have the luxury of writing full time, the only other living thing I have to take care of is an aging Labrador Retriever, and the clothes still sit in the dryer for two days before I get around to folding them. (I'm hanging my head in shame even as I write this. However, I'm not getting up to fold those dang clothes!)
3.) People think being a writer is a lot more sitting in cafes, drinking coffee and making up stories and a lot less... well... work. I can tell you this one surprised me, too. I was under the impression that being an author meant a lot of daydreaming and free-time. Oh, ho! Boy, was I ever mistaken. With the internet so prevalent in everyday life, authors are now expected to be their own publicists, marketing team, Facebook and Twitter experts, ad nauseum ad infinitum. But, hey, I wouldn't trade it for all the tea in China. Because it's still the best job on the planet. (Side note: Why do we use the phrase "all the tea in China" when most tea is grown in India? See, this is how my mind works...)
2.) Some of the most demure, business-like folks on earth are Weekend Warriors. When I tell people I write a romantic suspense series about secret agents posing as motorcycle mechanics, the stories of cross-country road trips and crazy weekends at Sturgis come out of the woodwork. Who knew there were so many motorcycle buffs out there?
And the number one thing I learned while writing this series? Drum roll please....
1.) I have a secret obsession with two types of men. The first is the military man. I mean, come on! Is there anything sexier than a guy in uniform? The second is the rebel outlaw. There's just something about a man mounting up on a half ton of hand-rolled steel and heading for the open road. I guess it's no coincidence then that the Black Knights Inc. series combines these two alpha male archetypes. Ssssmokin'!
Thanks for having me on! It's been a blast!
Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Julie grew up in a house full of women – she has three older sisters. As you can imagine, there was no lack of drama… or romance. Her mother enrolled her in a book club as soon as she began to read and it was the small spark that ignited her voracious appetite for the written word.
Because of Julie’s early immersion in literature, she found writing came quite naturally. In high school, she won multiple writing contests and was the proud senior editor of The Tiger’s Tale – her high school newspaper.
During her college years, however, she longed for a challenge. “Reading and writing felt like second nature to me, so I looked for something to stretch my intellectual capabilities,” she recalls. After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree, Julie began teaching advanced high school mathematics. “I loved working with the students and facing the challenges of the classroom, but I longed for the occasional snow day when I could race to the local book store, buy two or three new novels, and curl up in front of the fire to read for an entire day.”
It wasn’t until a fortuitous move to Chicago that Julie once more returned to her first passion. “Thankfully, my husband – my own personal hero – encouraged my decision to write full time.”
Now Julie lives on beautiful Lake Shore Drive with her husband and her fat, happy Labrador Retriever. When Julie isn’t writing, she enjoys camping, hiking, cycling, cooking, travel, and…reading, of course!
Look for the next two books in her fast-paced series: In Rides Trouble (September 2012) and Rev It Up (October 2012).
He’s the bad boy she’s always wanted...
Nate “Ghost” Weller has loved Ali Morgan nearly half his life. But he’s done something so heinous he’s convinced she’ll never forgive him if she discovers the truth, so he keeps his feelings and his secrets to himself. Then she blows into town with a mother lode of bad guys on her tail and Nate can’t deny she’s in serious trouble. Unfortunately, he’s the only one who can help her.
She’s the good girl he’s kept at arm’s length...
Ali knows Nate as the most solemn, aloof man on the planet. Sadly, he’s also the sexiest. For years she’s avoided him, unable to stomach his dark scowls and brooding silences… especially when she secretly yearns for his touch. Now she must rely on him to save her from the malevolent shadows ghosting her every move. When the bullets explode, so does their passion. But can love really conquer all? Or are some things just too terrible to forgive?
Thanks to Sourcebooks, one lucky winner will receive a print copy of Hell on Wheels by Julie Ann Walker!!
Good luck to all who enter!